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The Armenian police showed up on Friday at the offices of two independent TV channels critical towards the government to conduct an audit in case of an alleged violation of the rules introduced amid the COVID-19 pandemic, AP reported.

According to police, they came to check complaints about ArmNews’ anchor appearing on air without a medical mask.

Samvel Farmanyan, the station’s co-owner, noted that the visit appeared to signal PM Nikol Pashinyan’s intent to “declare war on the media.” 

“He will suffer a shameful defeat,” said ex-MP Farmanyan.

The management of ArmNews TV company noyrf they were told by the head of the national broadcasting commission that wearing masks is not a prerequisite for TV presenters during the broadcast.

Police visited another opposition TV channel, Channel 5, to look into a similar complaint.

"Both stations have been critical of Pashinyan’s activities, closely scrutinizing his government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic and its economic policies," AP added.

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